Saturday, July 2, 2016

New Glazed Work

I spent the bulk of the first two weeks of summer working on a commission for Rotary. While I was waiting on kilns, or filling in bits of unused time during this commission, I finished some functional work, mostly left over from last summer's workshop at Archie Bray.

slip trailed celadon mug thrown last summer, glazed last week
Last summer I threw work before the workshop, and glazed it in Montana. Then I threw work at the workshop and brought it home but mostly didn't get around to glazing it. I tried to spend my remaining bits of summer making sculpture, but mostly spent that time moving into the new building 

slip trailing bowls

Glazing is not my favorite fun-time activity. In fact I usually dread it. But, it is an activity that can be done in fairly small snatches of time when one doesn't have time to wedge, thrown and clean up before summer camp ends (and mom-time begins and one needs to pick up the kid).

slip trailing and underglaze

My major psychological advantage getting work glazed this summer versus last, is that this time around I had a stock of glazes that I actually kind of like. An added bonus is that I had a limited stock of glazes, so I wouldn't need to glaze more than four bottles worth.

slip trailing and celadon dots

I was fairly methodical in my glazing and stuck to the same palette and a similar plan as the work I did for the Rotary commission. The major adjustment is that instead of highlighting slashed marks with underglaze, I decorated some part of these pieces with slip trailed "hanging balloons." (I'm thinking of them as hanging balloons, from another perspective they're lollipops or circles at the end of lines.)
bowls and commission work after firing

I have fired about half of the glazed pieces, in the kilns with the Rotary commission work. Some of the stuff in the last firing didn't get quite hot enough, so I will need to re-fire it. Most of the work fired hot enough for the clear to flux (melt), but some of the colors look matte. Another 50-100 degrees or hour of firing should have fluxed all the glazes, but since they're cool now, I'll have to re-fire them completely.

under-fired pink celadon

I also have some pieces that haven't gotten to the kiln yet at all. Still, I have enough work done and fired correctly that I feel a sense of accomplishment and not the usual grumbly dread that accompanies glazing time for me.

un-fired glaze (on a form and glaze pattern started last year)

The glazes I used for these pieces are cone 6 celadons from Amaco. I've been pretty happy with them so far. I had started quite a few of the Archie Bray pieces with underglazes last summer, so the colors in this batch are more varied than they would otherwise be, but this time around, I only added black underglaze in a slip trailer and the four celadon glazes. 

two slip trailed pieces, possibly under-fired

On the new work, I have been trying to shape a thick rim into the pieces for a logical end for the colored glaze and a start for the hanging balloon decorations, but last summer I wasn't thinking this far ahead. The result is that some of the pieces I threw last year have a less logical starting point for glaze decoration. 
newly glazed bowls started last year

One really happy accidental result of this lack of planning when throwing is the bowl that has an irregular blue rim. The rim was meant to be round, but I slip trailed around the rim and ended up higher than intended. I decided to just treat the hanging string of one balloon as the edge for the rim color. I was annoyed when I glazed it, but coming out of the kiln it is one of my favorites.

my new favorite blue shell bowl

Last week, besides glazing old work, I threw some lidded pieces, in part because of a tentative commission through Oak Hollow Gallery. These pieces have slip trailing, but I haven't completed the glaze application yet. Actually, I ran out of glaze and only got the replacement order this week. 

slip trailed pieces awaiting new glaze

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